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E&P Earnings to Watch Early Next Week: APC, DVN, NFX

With crude facing the heat on several fronts – mounting worries over demand in China, the absence of major production cuts from OPEC, the effects of booming shale supplies in North America and a stagnant European economy – the commodity’s price has dropped sharply over the past two years. From about $105 per barrel in July 2014 to around $45 now – sinking in between to a decade-low price – the plummeting value of oil represents a decline of nearly 60% over the period.

E&P Companies are the Hardest Hit

While all crude-focused stocks stand to lose from falling commodity prices, companies in the exploration and production (E&P) sector are the worst placed, as they are extracting less value for their products. Consequently, with oil prices recently collapsing to their lowest levels in years, upstream firms have seen their revenues, earnings and cash flows being hit hard.

Moreover, with no refining business to help neutralize low oil prices, these companies have suffered the most. As oil sales floundered, producers got fewer revenues. To survive the period of weak profits, they took more debt. Some of them – especially the smaller and the more speculative ones with the most leverage – now face an existential crisis, while for the others the time bomb is ticking with crude prices stuck below $50 a barrel.

While mid- and large-sized energy producers are in a better position to weather the storm due to better financial flexibility, they still face declining profits and in some cases – widening losses.

Get Ready for 3 Big Releases Early Next Week

There are three such companies expected to come up with first-quarter numbers next week. Let’s take a sneak peek to see how things are shaping up for their upcoming quarterly results.

One of the largest U.S. oil producers by market value, Anadarko Petroleum Corp. APC is set to release its first-quarter 2016 results after the closing bell on Monday, May 2. With an aim to endure the precipitous commodity price downturn, The Woodlands, TX-headquartered Anadarko Petroleum lowered its dividend by 81% in February. The Zacks Rank #3 (Hold) company also plans to cut capital spending nearly 50% from the previous year while reducing its U.S. onshore rig count by 80%.

For the quarter to be reported, Anadarko Petroleum has an Earnings ESP of 0.00%. (Read more: Will Oil & Gas Stock Anadarko Surprise in Q1 Earnings?)

Devon Energy Corp. DVN will come up with first-quarter results after the closing bell on Tuesday, May 3. Lower oil prices also forced Devon Energy to slash its dividend by 75% to 6 cents a share. The large-cap energy explorer, carrying a Zacks Rank #3, further announced plans to lay off 20% of its workforce in the first quarter, apart from reducing 2016 capital spending by three-fourths to a range of $900 million to $1.1 billion.

For the first quarter of 2016, the stock has an Earnings ESP of -1.70%. (Read more: Will Devon Energy Disappoint Estimates in Q1 Earnings?)

Based in The Woodlands, TX, Newfield Exploration Co. NFX is set to report first-quarter 2016 results after the closing bell on Tuesday, May 3. Trying to shore up its balance sheet in the face of a prolonged commodity downturn, Newfield recently unveiled a public share offering to pay down debt and invest in capital projects. The oil and gas finder – also with a Zacks Rank #3 – raised gross proceeds of $700 million by issuing of 30 million shares.

The stock’s Earnings ESP for the to-be-reported quarter is -10.00%. (Read more: What Awaits Newfield Exploration this Earnings Season?)

Stay tuned! Check later on our full write-up on earnings releases of these stocks.

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Want the latest recommendations from Zacks Investment Research? Today, you can download 7 Best Stocks for the Next 30 Days. Click to get this free report
DEVON ENERGY (DVN): Free Stock Analysis Report
NEWFIELD EXPL (NFX): Free Stock Analysis Report
ANADARKO PETROL (APC): Free Stock Analysis Report
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